By Peter Okutu-ABAKALIKI
The Federal Road Safety Corps (FRSC) yesterday, began a sensitization campaign to enable transportation; Fleet Operators and commuters including road users adhere strictly to the Nigeria Centre Disease Control (NCDC) protocols on the prevention against COVID-19.
The FRSC Ebonyi Sector Commander, Mrs. Stella Uchegbu stated that the campaign became necessary in order to checkmate the spread of the disease, especially at Motor Parks where people converge for transportation purposes.
She stated this while addressing the Fleet Operators at the Enugu North Transportation Company’s park in Abakaliki.
Uchegbu called on the Fleet operators not to undermine all the safety protocols against the virus as a gradual easing of the COVID-19 lockdown was being implemented by the Federal Government.
“State commands of the Corps were directed to ‘step down’ the directives on safety measures and we decided to educate the fleet operators who will in turn educate their drivers, passengers among others.
“This is a ‘step down’ on the ‘lockdown’ exercise as the Federal Government (FG) has relaxed its ban on inter-state travels as part of lookdown’s gradual easing.
“People are presently moving freely but with the pandemic presently in its community transmission stage, it is our duty to ensure that travelers do not ‘carry the disease about.”
She said that motorists were, therefore, expected to observe all safety protocols which include: handwashing with soaps before and at disembarking points, use of hand sanitizers, wearing of nose masks, observation of social distancing among others.
“Public transportation companies are expected to provide temperature check devices, regular cleaning of surfaces inside their vehicles with bleach or sanitizers, provide protective barriers between passengers and fare cashiers, among others.”
The FRSC state sector commander said that mobile courts would also be established to try offenders but the emphasis would be placed more on enlightenment and monitoring.
“The use of air conditioners especially for long-distance journeys is suspended as hand washing and sanitizers should also be applied at least four times before the end of every journey,” she said.
Mr. Emeka Ikeakor, Fleet Manager of Enugu North Transport Company welcomed the FRSC and his colleagues to the company’s premises, noting that it will abide by all safety protocols to check the pandemic’s spread.
“We however appeal to the FRSC to be considerate during enforcement of the safety protocols as the reduced number of passengers for journeys has adversely affected drivers and public transportation companies,” he said.